Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Exploring Heath Road - Part 1

Spring finally arrived, albeit belatedly and in spite of the all the snow which lingered in shaded areas, and I hopped into my car for a driving tour of Heath Road. It took me from the town of Potsdam and into the town of Stockholm. I first came upon this woodsy camp which appeared to have been being remodeled when winter hit. I supposed that construction would resume as soon as the snow melted:

Another home set back into the trees:

This cute little red homestead had been abandoned:

An ultramodern, suburban type home:

And a white home with a big picture window and a large chimney:

But the scenery, which began as woodsy and turned to suburban, then began to look decidedly rural as I passed by old farms, with their fields, barns and equipment:

And big old maple trees along the road:

I again noted that big front porches for sitting are prevalent in this area, a trend I like very much:

A log cabin with an extra-large, barn style garage:

Burkum's Repair - which, judging by what was parked out front, must specialize in servicing large equipment:

A spectacular blue roof and classic white picket fence:

This place looked to be all set up for horses, though I didn't see any. Perhaps they were still in the barn or in another field. But there was yet much to see on Heath Road, so I'll post Part 2 tomorrow:

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Chicken Freedom Day!

After one of the longest, coldest snowiest winters in even the old timers' memories, I let the chickens out for the first time since autumn:

They were happy to go outside but appropriately cautious as they'd never seen snow and ice before - well, perhaps a small amount of snow in the autumn:

One brave hen took a single step out onto the ramp and was then pushed forward by the other hens behind her:

They decided to give it a try:

In short order, almost all my Barred Rock bantams were outside, pecking the ground and taking dust baths:

They found some hay covered snow banks, a source of all kinds of seeds and fun:

After such a long and difficult winter, it was wonderful to see my happy little hens (and one rooster) coming out into the sunshine:

Monday, April 14, 2014

Around The Farm, Mid-April

It's March 14 and I figured it was time for a pictorial farm update, beginning with a comfy cow. She was resting beside the hay bale feeder and chewing her cud. The day was rather warm in spite of the snowy field you see behind her:

Two of my girls, Gracie and Violet. Gracie, the cow on the left, has developed a swelling on her belly near the navel area and I've worried that it might be a hernia. You can see it in this photo, though it sometimes looks more pronounced. But it doesn't seem to bother her and there isn't much I can do anyway but keep an eye on her:

Amy resting blissfully in the springtime sun:

Does it seem as if all these cattle do is eat, poop, and sleep? Yes, it often seems that way to me too:

Inside the house, the dogs were no more ambitious than the cows. Here, Clover, Seamus, Fergus and Daphne shared the floor beside my chair at the computer:

Draco and Madeline rested together at the foot of the stairs:

Fergus and Clover shared the kitchen floor pillows and squeaky toys:

Another friendly collection of lazy dogs - Daphne, Fergus and Seamus:

Inside the chicken coop (the hens have still not been able to go outside), my 12 miniature (bantam) hens are laying 8-11 eggs per day:

Several of them are feeling broody and wanting to raise a clutch of eggs but I haven't let them. I may change my mind, though, as the weather improves. The problem is that there is only one nest box which they find acceptable and I often find two or three birds crowded together in it:

My little rooster has gotten quite feisty and will now attack my boots. He crows all day long:

And this is what I see each day when I enter their coop to refill their food and water and to collect the eggs. They have now begun going outside again during the day: